It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.
Alright, alright. I stole it. Sorry but I just could not resist. This was just too good.
I have been a Realtor for almost 10 years. That gives me more experience than about 85% of the agents in business today. Probably more than that. In the past I was told that 85% of all agents would be gone in 3 years. That was during the good times. As a recovering engineer I could probably figure out the math but then I would not be in recovery any longer would I?
Anyway, I wanted to share in the 10 years I have been doing this I have seen really good times and really bad times and I would say things are changing again. I want to tell you about two sales I just had. They are very much alike and I just want to share the positives and maybe one or two negatives. After that some encouragement for you if you’re thinking of selling. Stay tuned.
I put both of these on the market in March and under contract within 4 or 5 days. We used to have a time on market measured in months not days. Price points were about $80K for one and $180K for the other. Location was in Gwinnett County and in good school districts. We have already closed on both of them. About 40 days from start to finish for them both. My how things are different.
In both cases we had to work hard to get from contract to closing with inspections, appraisals, re-negotiations on repairs, dealing with lenders and their last minute silly stuff ($100 settlement on a class action lawsuit over some siding??, really??).
It seems like if you put down on the loan application that you have brown eyes, they send you to two different ophthalmologists to prove it. That seems to be a reaction (or over reaction) to the problems we caused with ‘stated income’ and perhaps over heated investing in the housing market but I get it. We have to be certain that all parties are being truthful, are employed or have the means to pay back the loan and of good credit worthy background. I get it but it does make my job harder. Sometimes a lot harder. I am not complaining mind you but just saying it makes me earn my living.
The good news is that just about everything we put on the market (at market value) is going under contract and closing. Loans are closing with just 3.5% down (FHA) at about 3-4% interest rates for 30 y ears fixed. Even Jumbo loans over $417K are closing with rates in the 4% range. The news still says ‘no one is lending money’ but that is just not true.
If you are thinking about selling I can tell you that there are 5 things that make a difference. Price, location, condition, amount of inventory and the agent you work with. Right now inventory is way down. We have less than 6 months of inventory in most price ranges under $250K in most areas in Gwinnett and surrounding counties. That technically is a sellers market but pricing is really important due to difficult appraisals. I just had one appraisal come in low by about $1500 and another that I think will be low by at least that much so we have to be realistic.
Location is always the biggest factor in selling that you don’t have a lot of control over but condition is important to help over come that. Better condition and better curb appeal can help with the appraiser too. Appraisals are opinions by humans (yes, appraisers are human) so there is some flex in the numbers.
This process is complicated, fast moving, frustrating, exciting, has periods of boredom and fun all at the same time. Sort of like getting shot out of a cannon I guess. If you’re thinking about selling or have questions about it, please call me at 678-231-1578 and I’ll do my best to answer them.
PS: We can help anyone move anywhere. If you know someone that could use our services please just introduce us. We’ll take great care of them.
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